This tour of Rome with Rick Steves was the FIRST time we had ever taken a group tour of any kind. Seeing Pope Francis at the Wed Audience was more than a WOW! Arriving back in our Rome neighborhood, you'll be free for dinner on your own. Capuchin Crypt Decorated with the bones of 4,000 Franciscan friars. It was good. Although my wife and I have been to Europe before to visit relatives, we don't consider ourselves "experienced" travelers and this was our first Rick Steves tour. We've used and told all our friends to use Rick Steves Travel guides for years; but, we believed todays Rome, with its deep historical context and long lines to get in anywhere, would require greater care. The tour guides for individual sites were deeply knowledgable and easy to understand. They made the city easy to move round in. How it works If, however, you're spending four days or more in Rome, the extra information in Rick Steves Rome can be worthwhile. There were many. Then going to the Vatican Museums. The pace was pleasant. We went to the Wednesday Pope blessing and got to see the Pope close up (5 ft away) That wasn't part of the tour, but Sarah got us tickets and told us the best place to stand and it was perfect. Seeing all the sights in which I had only read about or seen on TV. There was plenty of free time built in the week so I didn't feel I couldn't keep up or become exhausted and not enjoy the trip. "There were a couple of halls in the Vatican that were unbelievable. They sounded like angels.". It was great! Our days were seamlessly organized, filled with information, and peppered with authentic experiences. Seeing the Pope up close! I loved Nina, she really cracked the whip. It was all breathtaking. We had plenty of time and Francesca made it come to life. And finally, standing on the rooftop patio of the hotel at midnight on New Year's Eve and seeing fireworks all over the city was magical and priceless.". An 8th century Christian church built on top of a 4th century Christian church built on top of a 1st century Pagan place of worship utilizing much of the previous buildings construction materials. Rome tour recommendations. Lisa gave great advice. The tour was wonderful from the meet-and-greet meeting to our farewell dinner.. "There were so many "wow" moments that it's difficult to choose only one. Especially liked the owners of Hotel Lancelot. We enjoyed the mix of structured and free time. It had to work. We truly enjoyed each others company. The visit to San Clemente church was where I first began to understand how seamlessly the past and present were integrated into the city of Rome. They made our experience so interesting! We'll meet our local expert on the other side of the Tiber River and take a guided tour of the sprawling Vatican Museums, where we'll see an endless collection of treasures as we make our way to one of the world's most famous works of art: Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel. Personally, the gladiator entrance into the Colosseum and the Pauline Napoleon reclining statue in the Borghese Museum.". Personalized attention. We will obviously recommend the Rome in 7 days tour to our friends. IT was a first experience on a Rick Steves' tour. "Well, this is hard to pick as there was not any part of the tour that I didn't enjoy. Going on this tour changed our approach on how to do travel. We had a great group to travel with and we meshed quickly. A truly memorable experience. Rome is an interesting city. Hopefully, she changes her mind and decides to guide for RS groups the Vatican Museums and St Peter's as well. These guides were also great teachers thereby allowing us to see more and thus enjoy more making this trip truly a life changing experience for my family. It was an amazing adventure to walk amongst 2000+ year old ruins and learn about all that had taken place there over the centuries. Opportunity to experience Christmas in Rome! The 7 day tour of Rome was what I expected and more. Perfect balance of group time and personal time. The combination of "must see" sites along with "off the beaten path" sites really made the difference. She was knowledgeable but not hospitable from the start. We saw some amazing things, but it wasn't until our tour began that we could begin to grasp the true meaning of what we were seeing. "General Audience with Pope Francis on September 11, 2019. "The Borghese Gallery was the icing on the cake at the end of the tour. He made everyone feel special. We have traveled in Europe using RS guide books, and did a RS tour in Greece 11 years ago, so our expectations were high. I plan on taking the Germany, Austria and Switzerland tour with Rick Steve's in 2012. Terms of Service | Privacy, Ancient Rome: The Things That Were Caesar’s, Europe’s Convents Offer Tranquility — and Treats, Experiencing Italy’s Renaissance in Person, Finding Peace in Europe’s Overlooked Sights, John Paul II Sights: Visiting the World of a Modern-Day Saint, Pomp and Consequence: Visiting Europe’s 20th-Century Fascist Sites, There’s No Place like Rome for the Holidays, Tivoli: Still Rome’s Great Escape, 2,000 Years Later, Antiquities and Archaeology So much to see, take in, digest, appreciate. But the way it was set up allowed me to get to know people on the tour at a good pace. I have traveled a bit in Europe in the past and always did my own planning, etc. "Rome itself is a wow moment. Their knowledge, interpretation and charm impressed my whole family- and they're pretty harsh critics. The Pantheon is remarkable for being over 1800 years old!". So cool to go into the neighborhood shops and sample the foods! Some of the days were hard, even a bit too hard with all the walking. We went back the next week, when we were on our own, and I think that sight would never grow old.". I especially liked the way Susanna and the local guides wove the thread of humanity and time through our stops. A thoroughly enjoyable hotel. The first of two back-to back Rick Steves' Tours (and first ever guided tour) and our first visit to Rome, we loved every minute of this adventure! I really enjoyed the tour. What can I say but It was a life time adventure, and thanks to Ben and everyone associate with Rick Steves tour. "Found the San Clemente church to be fascinating - the 4th century church underneath and the pagan temple were amazing!". As this was my first Rick Steves tour, I really have nothing to compare it with. She made you feel the plight of the slaves. What a rich experience to be guided through the past by such a sensitive and knowledgeable Roman. The second was the Pantheon, really for the same reason but it also is such an impressive building. Overall, the tour was everything we expected and more. Seeing the Colosseum from the ground floor was a treat too. This was our first tour with Rick Steves team and the experience was outstanding. This was a wonderful surprise for all of us on the tour as it was not listed in the itinerary! Several could not make change, could not find hotel. Rick Steves Rome 2017 ... More than just reviews and directions, a Rick Steves guidebook is a tour guide in your pocket. The other was the visit to the Borghese Gallery where I fell in love with the intricate sculpture "Apollo and Daphne".". Unforgettable.". Where & When? I found the experience both pleasant and educational. We started with a Rick Steves 7 day tour of Rome then spent 20 more days touring Italy on our own with a Rick Steves Italy book. Perfect of attractions mixed with visits to neighborhoods. After a break for lunch, we'll tour ancient Rome's birthplace: the Forum. The side by side existence of goodness and evil as part of everyday life in ancient Rome. I think we got a great overview of Rome and had a good balance of programed and free time. From the Colosseum to St Peter's (a personal highlight) to Borghese Museum, it was all good. "I loved the Borghese Gallery. The timing was perfect as I was able to attend mass at 5:00 pm in the Basilica. "I loved the food tour of the Trastevere neighborhood. Riding a 4 person bike in the Borghese Gardens. A shared tour is a smart way to experience the sights, while meeting up with fellow Rick Steves readers. Our Rome "family" was great. In fact, we kept saying we needed a new word for the Amazing, Awesome places we were seeing.". Our guide, Ben, was fantastic. "The Borghese Galleria and our guide Franchesca. I could have spent a couple of hours just sitting there.". ▲▲▲ Vatican Museums Four miles of the finest art of Western civilization, culminating in Michelangelo's glorious Sistine Chapel. It was at times overwhelming but in a most positive way. I had such an amazing time in Rome!! and touring the Roman forum.". Very clean and friendly staff. We went with another couple that were friends of ours and we had a very nice trip. I can testify, firsthand, to the power of Rick Steves. (46:24), Sightseeing in the Ancient World Even the weather cooperated. ▲ Castel Sant'Angelo Hadrian's Tomb turned castle, prison, papal refuge, now museum. Having a balance of scheduled & reserved tours with free time to see other things we were interested in. The ruins and the fields were absolutely incredible. Incredible local guides knew their stuff, how to communicate it and how to maneuver their group around the busy venues to maximize your time. Stephanie did an outstanding job as our tour guide. ▲▲ Trajan's Column, Market, and Forum Tall column with narrative relief, forum ruins, and museum with entry to Trajan's Market. Also we will be looking for other Rick Steves' tours that meet our needs. "For me the wow was touring the Vatican with an expert guide. Excellent guide!". Sleep in Rome. and seeing the Sistine Chapel. Well organized, good communication from Karin, excellent local guides, comfortable hotel, and good food! Today we'll venture outside the city, touring the ruins of Rome's first colony, Ostia Antica, the ancient seaport which connected Rome to its ever-expanding Mediterranean empire. I believe the fact that we were in Rome in November was a huge benefit. Instead of just reciting facts, dates, names, etc like every other guide, she puts context/perspective on the sights/monuments: "The more you know, the more you see." "There were only highlights so it's hard to pick just one. Friday at the Borghese Gallery with Francesca was exceptional also. Francesca, Ludovi a and Paolo were excellent museum guides. ▲ Trevi Fountain Baroque hot spot into which tourists throw coins to ensure a return trip to Rome. The crowds were unbearable. Stepping through the Gate of Death and onto the Colosseum floor, hearing the echos of 60,000 people screaming, was something so special thanks to Francesca's evocative story telling. "How to pick? "That's really a hard thing to answer because it was all great. I've always wanted to go to Rome. The activity scale was also helpful. What else could I ask for? "When Nina used the phrase "winds of change." And it was powerful. We had an unplanned day and felt confident and relaxed on our own Our local guides were fantastic as well. It did. This was a special trip for my husband and I as we were celebrating meeting in Rome 50 years ago. And that's a reflection on our guides. This is the first tour that showed you how to use public transportation that was extremely helpful. The local guide pushed us in the Coliseum, resulting in a syncope, fall and injury. "My son was amazed by the vastness of the Vatican,our guide was passionate & clearly loved sharing her knowledge of the intricacies of that site. I don't want to spoil any newbies. We felt a freedom to just experience the grandeur of Rome without having to plan, coordinate, book and then monitor all of the details. Arrivederci, Roma! It took a long time to realize such a dream so my expectations were high. (18:31), Antiquities and Archaeology II I would definitely recommend your tours to others. Walking to and from the sights was excessive. There were no hitches along the way with the planned schedule, and all the guides were right on time and very friendly and knowledgeable. Our RS guide, Rainer, was a wonderful teacher and really made the trip fun all the while keeping us safe. The guest lecturers were entertaining and knew what they were talking about. "I have been asked this question by so many and the answer is difficult to narrow down! Incredible art with our own private expert guide to help us appreciate many things that most people would easily miss when observing a masterpiece.". "If only I were able to name just one wow moment. "The visit to the multilayered San Clemente has to be my WOW moment. The "Best of Rome" Tour was simply outstanding. And my last "wow" moment was seeing the Colosseum at night from above the Colosseo Metro Station on the last night. We were drawn to the way the tour was arranged as far as giving us tours to do with the group as well as time on our own each day. The ancient Rome tour, guided by Francesa, would have to be it. I will forever remember the heart she gave to each of these ancient areas, giving us the perspective of being a Roman citizen living during these times, at one point moving me to tears with her descriptions. But the Borghese Gallery tour was the surprise "wow" moment for me. It set the perfect framework for understanding everything else we would see throughout the week". Additionally the local guides were thorough and entertaining. One when my husband and I were exploring on our own. I wanted to gripe about taking a cab to the Vatican, but then we would have been deprived the experience of getting into an argument with the cabbie overcharging us and the cabbie police getting on his ass. "I had been to Rome before so I had seen the Colosseum and Vatican, so although I learned so much on the tour about the biggies I didn't get the same Wow that I did the 1st time. I had some trepidation about being part of an organized tour group, however, most of my anxiety was alliviated within the first 24 hours. Bernini made exquisite sculptures with attention to many small, intricate details, filled with body action and animated faces projecting the look of being alive. "Borghese Gallery. Show Rick Steves Italy Audio Tours, Ep Rome: Colosseum - Feb 28, 2018 dolce vita stroll through the heart of Rome, soaking up the city's evening ambience at the classy Piazza Navona and the remarkably preserved, 2,000-year-old Pantheon. Enjoyed learning about the idea that Rome is a historical "lasagna" and then seeing one example after another.". The Vatican I would def. He, and all the guides throughout were so knowledgeable & fun to be with! Great tour. "My favorite "wow' moment was viewing the vastness of the Forum from high above on Capitoline Hill and imagining what it must have been like to stroll through it in its glory all those years ago. Better yet, the wow moment was probably the Borghese Gallery for me.". Everyone was friendly and adventurous. But, our tour guide told us that Mass at St Peters Basilica was starting in 10 minutes and anyone could just walk up to the guard and ask to be let in and we did. The second, the painting by Rapheal in the Vatican, Peter and the angel. The Lancelot Hotel is a very nice place as a base in terms of location and gracious hospitality, not to mention the fine meals prepared by Chef Faris. All good, "We were able to get really close to see the Pope as he rode around the Vatican grounds". I was pleased with our hotel, our guide who managed the group, the guides that gave us a deeper sense of Rome, and the sights, sounds, and tastes. One month prior to the tour departure, you'll find the directions to your tour hotel in the Documents section of your tour account. Iliana, our tour guide, filled in the art details with her passionate love of Italian history. My first time to do travel with a group! Such a seamless mix of the past and present!". I am so glad we did. ", Our first Rick Steves Tour and our first planned tour except cruising. I was safe, well supported and able to fully enjoy the experience. Rome was crazy busy, yet this tour made it enjoyable. ▲▲▲ St. Peter's Basilica Most impressive church on earth, with Michelangelo's Pietà and dome. I loved the local neighborhood tour and eating in the Trastevere area. That's not a criticism of the tour, it's just how I am. My friends and family can't believe how close we were to the Pope. Hotel and staff were outstanding and went out of their ay to make our visit exceptional. Out guide, Ben, was amazingly knowledgeable about the city, and its ancient and modern inhabitants. I appreciated that. Our guide was great. In general the Vatican was a sensory overload though. (16:58), Visiting St. Peter's Basilicia I felt that I had a better understanding of what the artist was trying to convey when I had context for the sociopolitical influences active during the time period they lived in.". This was our first European tour experience, so I have nothing to compare it to, however I would say that my expectations were met....and more! It was an excellent balance of ancient sites, museums, and churches, but also a delightful food tour and visit to the Mediterranean. We'll continue on to the awe-inspiring St. Peter's Basilica, the greatest church in Christendom. Karen did an excellent job organizing to the last detail and presenting us with the astounding history of Rome. He was knowledgeable, enthusiastic, and kind to all members of our tour. It was my fourth visit. Bringing in Paolo and Francesca to tour the Forum and Colloseum along with the churches and the Borghese Museum was a real plus! ▲ Santa Maria della Vittoria Church with Bernini's swooning St. Teresa in Ecstasy. Be on your feet, walking and standing, for up to three hours, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions. I was able to try foods I wouldn't likely try if I were to have only dined on my own. This pay-what-you-wish walking tour will take you past some of the most historic sites in Rome, and it has a rating of almost 5 out of 5 stars. My wife and I knew nothing, and had the best trip of our life. See our FAQ | Call "1. These were the most memorable "wow" experiences for me.". Old means different things to the Italians. With RickSteves' Rome 2007, travelers can experience the best of everything Rome has to offer -- economically and hassle-free. "From a learning/understanding/experience basis, our first day tour of the Basilica of St Clement with Elaria was a "wow" moment, introducing me to the many layers of Roman history. My overall tour experience was very positive. The whole trip was spectacular!!". "It was an outstanding opportunity to visit Vatican City earlier in the day that was set up for the Vatican museums tours. The 7 day tour of Rome gave me in depth experience including Ancient Rome, history, art and food. The layers of Rome exposed in such a nondescript place. We saw what I wanted to see and do! It was an experience of a life time for me to see Rome. "St Peters Basilica, the Borghese Galletry and the Pantheon. I have never been on a long tour. Our guide was great and very helpful. It was a good experience a great way to get to see a learn about Rome. (19:00). "There were so many. Our tour Guide Nina helped create an experience my daughter and I will never forget. Art, History, Architecture, Culture, Religion, Food, and Community. "Many! The tour of Rome was great. (one carry on size bag and a back pack). We have been to Europe before, but not for a while and never on a tour. Totally met expectations. I tried things I probably would not have tried. This trip really made history come alive as we saw layers of different civilizations built one on top of the next. If we had not had that opportunity my WOW was seeing and hearing about Bernini's Sculptures.". We met food shop purveyors with delicious food and wonderful family run business stories, so important to neighborhoods.". Wife - The fountains", "Walking in the gate where the gladiators walked through in the Colosseum.". Stacey and Anna were wonderful tour guides and the sights shared with the group were amazing. We really enjoyed the tour and the immersion in Rome. Ed". We covered a lot of ground and learned a lot about Rome. I had so much fun and learned an incredible amount about the history of Roma. Having tour guides who could explain the architecture, the history and the stories behind the marvelous sights made my trip to Rome absolutely wonderful. Great command of Italy's history and has a great sense of humor. We had just enough time to explore on our own. "Villa Borghese. Likewise we had spent time in Rome. Overall great experience. In our free time we were close to so many places to go and discover. There were no children, but if there were, they would not have liked it at all. ... Rick Steves’ Ancient Rome Audio Tours. Francesca is a treasure trove of fabulous information. Our guide was bright, well spoken, and highly knowledgeable and had arranged for local guides to lead us through specific portions of our tour who were similarly gifted with the abilities to enlighten and entertain us throughout the tour. But walking into the Colisseo literally took my breath away.". You should be able to climb stairs with your suitcase and get around town walking on tours for several hours. It was well organized and covered all the important and interesting sites. Our trip was wonderful. Our free time was a blessing too. "Basilica San Clement – literally going back in time as we descended the steps. Even throwing us a Halloween Dinner Party! It was well organized, with a good balance between tour and free time. Our tour guide Stephanie was outstanding. With Rick's tours you carry your own bag and must travel light. Hotel Lancelot is a top-notch hotel with great staff and convenient location. "I loved the church of St Clements. The combination of old world history and the influence of the Catholic church was the perfect blend. "Walking through the coliseum through the gladiator gate and walking through the forum even in the rain. "The colosseum and Forum / Palestine Hill experience were outstanding. After hours of confusing and contradictory research trying to plan a trip to Rome, we threw up our hands and made one decision: Trust Rick Steves! The primary and local tour guides were professional, personable and generous in their behavior. Rick Steve's tour is the best way to see Rome for the first time. My family and I took the seven day Paris tour run by Rick Steves and had a great time. The Borghese was it for me. After breakfast, we'll ride the metro back in time to ancient Rome. "Hard to say. We, Janet and I, both were excited to see things that we had read about our entire lives. There were multiple people in our group who have been on tours with your group, "Going to Vatican City was my favorite if I had to choose just one event. A fast-paced week of learning and adventure. Completely revised and updated, Rick Steves' Rome 2007 includes opinionated coverage of both famous and lesser-known sights; fr Our hotel was in a great location. Felt like we took in all Rome can offer in a jam packed week. The guides were fantastic, especially Stephanie and Francesca. I would recommend encouraging people to explore as much as possible on their own. Our tours are physically active! Each day had its own charm and thoroughly intellectually stimulating. 5. But the Borghese was the highlight of my trip. Our tour guide, Karin Kibby, was exceedingly gracious, assuring group cohesion and organization, creating a tour "family". I think we saw the high points of what I wanted to experience. We wanted to focus on Rome, and not spend time moving from place to place. For me, visiting the Borghese Gallery had to be the highlight. Everything went smoothly. Our local tour brought "life" to all of the pieces of art that we viewed; it has motivated me to learn more regarding art appreciation. Wonderful time with a very seasoned guide who took excellent care of everyone on the tour. In October, it was dark by 6:30 and I was happy to not have to walk to restaurants for dinner by myself. "I am the type of person that would look at something like the Colosseum or the Forum and seen nothing but a pile of old rocks. The tour was very well managed and organized without any major or inconvenience issues. This tour exceeded them all. Didn't care much for the potatoe pizza......". We especially appreciated the little surprises RS tours seem to add. We had an absolutely delightful week in Rome with this tour! This time we asked my parents to join us so they could experience the things we raved about after returning from our honeymoon on the Venice, Florence, Rome tour in march of 2018. I was in Rome in September, 2018 at the end of my "Best of Italy in 17 Days" tour last fall. Europe - Rick Steve's audio tours vs. Tour Guides, please help! We walked ALOT - 6-9 miles daily , which was good because we also ATE impossible amounts of pasta , pizza and Italian pastries and drank amazing table wines every day ! It was very special to be in Rome for Christmas and New Years. Afterward, you'll have a free evening to make your own neighborhood discoveries. This was my first visit to Rome and it gave me a good overview and working knowledge of the city, its sites, customs and procedures (ie how to cross streets without being rude or being struck.) The people in our group were AMAZING! Second would have to be the Colosseum which is such an engineering marvel. recommendations, it has good seating inside and out. This was my first RSE tour; I did not know what to expect. The museums, basilicas, ruins, art galleries, the Colosseum, Vatican, catacombs, landscape, sea. To request advance notification of when a tour will be available for booking, please select ‘Notify Me’ next to the departure date and join the list. Tips from the guides on culture, food, other sights and activities was excellent. Very positive energy throughout the tour. This was my first trip outside of US. The Amazon Book Review Book recommendations, author interviews, editors' picks, and more. Without them I would have overlooked and missed a lot. ▲▲ Museo dell'Ara Pacis Shrine marking the beginning of Rome's Golden Age. Ben was so thoughful he gave me birthday card, a Roma calendar, and taught the group to sign happy birthday to me in Italian. Great experience, Nina was also great. Couldn't have asked for a better introduction to Europe and the RS way of traveling for my parents. I have since read more on Bernini because of the tour.". It was a great tour, and our firs Rick Steves tour. He made it easy for me to feel comfortable exploring the city on our own. I loved getting to know the history of Rome . It brought to mind the change that has characterized Europe for all its existence. 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